|1st||8:57||MIN||1-0||PP||Emily Brown (4)||Patti Marshall/15, Nicole Schammel/14|
|2nd||2:38||STC||1-1||EV||Brooke Kudirka (1)||Brittney Anderson/8, Abby Thiessen/7|
|2nd||13:23||MIN||2-1||EV GW||Patti Marshall (2)||Lindsay Agnew/8, Sophie Skarzynski/19|
|2nd||17:48||MIN||3-1||EV||Nicole Schammel (16)||Taylor Wente/12, Sydney Baldwin/20|
|3rd||19:02||MIN||4-1||EV EN||Grace Zumwinkle (15)||-|
|St. Cloud State||0||1||0||1|
|Shots on Goal||1st||2nd||3rd||SOG|
|St. Cloud State||8||10||8||26|
|Team Stats and Records||PP||PIM||SHGF|
|St. Cloud State (8-20-5)||0/1||2/4||0|
|St. Cloud State Goaltending||MIN||GA||1||2||3||Saves|
|Emma Polusny (L, 6-10-4)||58:27||3||9||9||7||25|
|Sidney Peters (W, 15-8-1)||60:00||1||8||9||8||25|
MINNEAPOLIS - The No. 7 Golden Gopher women's hockey team used a 4-1 win to earn a WCHA First Round sweep over St. Cloud State and punch its ticket to the 2018 WCHA Final Faceoff. Emily Brown, Patti Marshall, Nicole Schammel, and Grace Zumwinkle scored goals and Sidney Peters made 25 saves to lead the Maroon & Gold at Ridder Arena on Saturday evening.
"Well, I thought it was another really solid game," head coach Brad Frost said. "We've had two games in a row where we played really well. I thought we defended a little better tonight that we did last night. We're really happy to continue to extend our season and take a run at the WCHA Final Faceoff Championship here next weekend."
Minnesota (22-10-3) sealed the 4-1 win with three unanswered goals after St. Cloud State (8-20-5) evened the score at 1-1 early in the second period.
"Getting those two goals at the end of the second period made things a little more comfortable," Frost said. "I thought in the third period we did a real nice job of keeping things deep, keeping it outside for them, and really not allowing any quality scoring chances."
The Gophers got on the board first, taking a 1-0 lead when Brown scored on the power play at the 8:57 mark of the opening period, but SCSU's Brooke Kudirka tied the game at one at the 2:38 mark of the middle frame.
Marshall broke the 1-1 tie when she scored her second goal of the season, the eventual game-winner, off a feed from Lindsay Agnew and Sophie Skarzynski at the 13:23 mark of the second period. Schammel then netted her second of the series late in the period to give the Gophers a two-goal lead heading into the final stanza.
The teams were even with eight shots on goal apiece in the third period, but Zumwinkle sealed the win with an empty-net goal with 58 seconds on the clock.
The Gophers were one-for-three on the power play while holding SCSU scoreless on one opportunity with the skater advantage.
Minnesota had a 29-26 advantage in shots on goal for the game, and St. Cloud State got 25 saves from goaltender Emma Polusny as the Huskies' season came to a close.
The Gophers will join WCHA regular-season champion and top-seeded Wisconsin along with No. 2 seed Ohio State, which defeated Minnesota State, 6-0 and 5-0, in the WCHA First Round, at next weekend's WCHA Final Faceoff. Minnesota Duluth and Bemidji State will play game three of their best-of-three first round series on Sunday to determine the fourth team of the Final Faceoff field.
The WCHA semifinals are set for 2 p.m. CT and 5 p.m. CT next Saturday, March 3 with the championship game to follow at 2 p.m. CT Sunday, March 4. Minnesota and Ohio State will play in the second semifinal while Wisconsin will meet the winner of the Minnesota Duluth/Bemidji State series in semifinal one.